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Medical Examiner Unable To Identify Remains From 1944 Hartford Circus Fire

Lt. Paul Cicero
The Hartford Police Department via AP
The Northwood Cemetery exhumation scene in Windsor in 2019. The bodies of two victims of the 1944 Hartford circus fire were exhumed in the hopes of determining whether one is a woman who is among five people still listed as missing after the tragedy.

Connecticut’s chief medical examiner has finished analyzing the DNA of human remains from the infamous 1944 Hartford circus fire. The results…inconclusive.

Chief Medical Examiner James Gill says a high bacterial content interfered with testing. 

He was studying two unidentified sets of human remains from one of the deadliest fires in American history. It took place during an afternoon performance of the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus. At least 167 people died and hundreds more were injured.

Gill’s office exhumed the two bodies from Northwood Cemetery in Windsor. He had hoped to connect one of them to a woman listed as missing after the fire. 

Davis Dunavin loves telling stories, whether on the radio or around the campfire. He started in Missouri and ended up in Connecticut, which, he'd like to point out, is the same geographic trajectory taken by Mark Twain.
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